Mussels and Tomato Sauce for Pasta

A mild yet tangy tomato sauce for pasta with mussels, mushrooms, and leek has a distinctive flavor and aroma. Serve this tasty sauce with spaghettini and white wine, and a little freshly grated parmesan. A nice loaf of French or Italian bread wouldn't go amiss, either . . .

1 28 oz can crushed tomatoes

1 bottle mussels in brine

˝ lb mushrooms, chopped

1 clove garlic, minced (optional)

1 leek, thinly sliced (white part only)

1/3 cup salsa

1 tbls lime juice or 1/4 lime, squeezed

1 tbls crushed peppercorns

2 tbls parsley, chopped

˝ tsp cumin, ground

1 fresh tomato, seeded and diced

grated parmesan

4 – 6 servings spaghettini

coarse salt

flavored olive oil, optional

Heat the olive oil in a large saucepan and briefly sauté thinly sliced leek and mushrooms.  Pour in the crushed tomatoes and add the salsa and lime juice.  Use the brine from the mussels to rinse the tomato tin and add this to the sauce.  Stir well and add the mussels.

Simmer for 15 minutes, then add the seasonings and diced tomato and continue to cook for another 15-20 minutes, or until flavors are well married.

Cook pasta and toss with coarse salt and olive oil flavored with basil or other herb, if available.  Serve with grated parmesan and a white wine.

Sesame Seed Loaf
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